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Banker's Toolbox, Inc., leaders in compliance solutions for financial institutions, announced the acquisition of Georgia-based MainStreet Technologies (MST). MST is an industry leader in the loan risk management space. This acquisition adds to a strong and growing portfolio of compliance-related solutions and will continue to enhance the value Banker's Toolbox brings to both their customers and the industry. (Read full press release here.)

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McWilliams discusses financial services trends

In remarks delivered at the Office of Financial Research and the University of Michigan’s Center on Finance, Law, and Policy Fourth Annual Financial Stability Conference in Washington, D.C., FDIC Chairman McWilliams discussed the following trends affecting financial services and how regulators should respond to those trends:

  • The evolving role of banks in the financial system
  • Migration in mortgage activity from banks to nonbanks
  • Implications of migration for banks and regulators


U.S. Faster Payments Council formed

A group of payments industry leaders has announced the formation of a newly incorporated organization, the U.S. Faster Payments Council (FPC), to work toward the goal of a ubiquitous, world-class payment system that allows Americans to safely and securely pay anyone, anywhere, at any time and with near-immediate funds availability. The FPC will be focused on private-sector approaches to solving problems and addressing issues that inhibit adoption of faster payments. Through dialogue, collaboration and education, the FPC will channel its resources toward the most pressing challenges and opportunities.


FFIEC statement on OFAC cyber sanctions

The members of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) have issued a joint statement alerting financial institutions to recent actions taken by the Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) under their Cyber-Related Sanctions Program and to the potential impact it may have on financial institutions’ risk-management programs. The statement describes the issues a financial institution should consider regarding the effect of sanctions on the operations of the financial institution and the implications of the continued use of products or services provided by a sanctioned entity, some of which claim they are U.S. based and offer services to U.S. financial institutions.


FDIC cybersecurity preparedness resource posted

FIL-63-2018, issued Friday, announced additions to the FDIC's cybersecurity awareness resources for financial institutions. There are two new vignettes for the Cyber Challenge.

Cyber Challenge facilitates discussion between financial institution management and staff about operational risk issues. Its exercises are designed to provide valuable information about an institution's current state of preparedness and identify opportunities to strengthen resilience to operational risk. Cyber Challenge is not a regulatory requirement; rather, it is an optional resource that may assist financial institutions in strengthening their resilience to operational risk.


Fed study on U.S. payments fraud

The Federal Reserve Board has released the results of a study on changes in U.S. payments fraud from 2012 to 2016. The study found that, by value and number, fraud across core noncash payments was generally growing faster than non-fraudulent payments from 2012 to 2015, but payments fraud remains rare and represents only a fraction of one percent of the total value or number of payments during that period.


FedPayments group progress report

The Federal Reserve System's FedPayments Improvement team ( has released its Fall 2018 Progress Report. The group was formed to facilitate the gathering of stakeholders in pursuit of a better payment system for the future. Hundreds of organizations and individuals have collaborated on achieving the five desired outcomes: speed, security, efficiency, international payments, and collaboration. Goals for the organization include widespread deployment of "real-time" payments systems by 2020.


OCC to host Innovation Office Hours in Dallas

The OCC Office of Innovation has announced it will hold Innovation Office Hours November 14–15, 2018, in Dallas, Texas, to promote responsible innovation in the federal banking system. Office Hours are one-on-one meetings with the OCC’s Office of Innovation staff to discuss financial technology (fintech), new products or services, partnering with a bank or a fintech company, or other matters related to responsible innovation in the federal banking system.


Fed seeks input on actions to allow real-time settlement of faster payments

The Federal Reserve Board on Wednesday invited public comment on actions the Federal Reserve could take to support faster payments in the United States. The potential actions, which would facilitate real-time interbank settlement of faster payments, build on collaborative work with the payment industry through the Federal Reserve System's Strategies for Improving the U.S. Payment System (SIPS) initiative.

Views are being sought on two potential actions that may support the further development of faster payments in the United States while increasing the resiliency and security of services offered to the public:

  • the development of a service for real-time interbank settlement of faster payments 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year (24x7x365); and
  • the creation of a liquidity management tool that would enable transfers between Federal Reserve accounts on a 24x7x365 basis to support services for real-time interbank settlement of faster payments, regardless of whether those services are provided by the private sector or the Federal Reserve Banks.

Comments on the proposal are due by December 14, 2018. Update: Published at 83 FR 57351 in 11/15/18 Federal Register.

Fed Governor Lael Brainard, who co-chairs the Fed Payments Improvement initiative's oversight committee, addressed the Fed Payments Improvement Community Forum in Chicago on Wednesday, speaking on the role of the Federal Reserve in ensuring safe and reliable payments, moving to 24/7 real-time settlement, and the role of the Federal reserve in faster payments.


Bureau tips on using mobile payment services

An article on the Bureau Blog notes that with the development of new payment methods come new risks. Person-to-person payment services and mobile payment apps have become part of everyday life for millions of people. In addition to information about federal consumer protection laws and regulations that apply to those payment services, a list of tips consumers can use to protect themselves is provided.


OCC to hold workshops in San Francisco

The OCC will host two workshops at the Holiday Inn San Francisco-Golden Gateway, San Francisco, California, November 6–7, for directors of national community banks and federal savings associations.

  • The Credit Risk workshop on November 6 focuses on credit risk within the loan portfolio, such as identifying trends and recognizing problems. The workshop also covers the roles of the board and management, how to stay informed of changes in credit risk, and how to effect change.
  • The Operational Risk workshop on November 7 focuses on the key components of operational risk—people, processes, and systems. The workshop also covers governance, third-party risk, vendor management, and cybersecurity.


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